This is our last evening in Europe. Tomorrow we fly out of Frankfurt to Iceland and on to Toronto. I am sitting in the little apartment of the yellow house pictured above and nursing an injured neck–or at least a very painful stiff neck, the result, I think, of schlepping around these bags for the last month, and also from spending an entire day with my head up looking at beautiful frescoed ceilings. (The other photo is of the gorgeous garden across the street from the apartment in Muffendorf, Bonn.) My mood, then, is rather subdued. I will, of course, write more specific blog ruminations once we get home, but right now, I thought I should at least say a few words before departing after this 9-month journey.
We have lots of wonderful memories from this trip, and a tremendous amount of thanks to all of our generous people! We have made lots of new friends, revisited old friends, and seen so many places that were on our bucket list that we will have to make a new bucket list when we get home. Except for the Great Robbery of Barcelona and few typically rude people in Berlin, we have enjoyed every single minute of the trip. Part of the enjoyment has been that there has been something new to do nearly every day, and we haven’t had to deal with boredom much (I get bored easily). Another aspect is that we have been able to avoid thinking about what we are going to do with the rest of our lives, and with our precarious financial situation. (Do we sell the house that we can no longer afford? Do we move somewhere else? If so, where? What are we going to do to occupy ourselves every day when we don’t have another museum to visit or a train/plane to catch?)
While we have certainly learned that Europe has its great share of problems–rising right-wing governments, financial disasters in some countries, and xenophobia–we have also recognized even more strongly than before that we would like to live a European life. Leaving Vienna was really saddening! This may be an illusion, but the best reasons we are coming home are to see that beautiful new baby grandson, and to figure out what kind of situation we can arrange for our future. If it weren’t for these factors (i.e., kiddos and money), we would come back, sell up, and move here!
And if the unthinkable happens–of which I am not even going to mention his name–we have our exit strategy in place! More on all of this later, but for now, wish us well on our journey home, and LOVE to all of our European friends!!! We couldn’t have done it without your support!